A little-known group called "Advocates for Faith and Freedom" together with the Northern California chapter of the Alliance Defense Fund filed suit in federal district court on Tuesday to overturn SB 777, the Student Civil Rights Act, which was signed into law by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger October 12, 2007. The law, which would have gone into effect on January 11 if not for a parallel signature gathering effort to place a repeal referendum on the June 2008 primary ballot, "clarifies and reinforces existing protections currently in the state’s education code, including California’s definition of gender, which has been in place since 2000" according to its sponsor Equality California. SB 777 was written by openly gay State Senator Sheila James Kuehl, who also sponsored and wrote the original bill in 1999 which had initially placed protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity in California schools with AB 537, the California Student Safety and Violence Prevention Act of 2000.

In their lawsuit, the heterosexual supremacists claim (pdf):

The Governor of California recently signed into law Senate Bill 777, which will
take effect on January 11, 2008. Senate Bill 777, in conjunction with the California Penal Code, introduces a new definition of “gender” into the California Education Code and is part of an overall nondiscrimination scheme applicable to schools in California. Senate Bill 777 recklessly abandons the traditional understanding of biological sex in favor of an elusive definition that is unconstitutionally vague. This lawsuit facially challenges the redefinition of the term “gender” as it will be impossible for school administrators and educators to enforce this new definition.
Further, it will be impossible for administrators and educators to know whether they themselves are violating the nondiscrimination provisions of the Education Code or the Penal Code. Additionally, the special treatment intended for a select few students through the enforcement of Senate Bill 777 will result in the violation of the privacy rights of the remainder of students not targeted for special treatment under Senate Bill 777. For these reasons, Plaintiffs bring this lawsuit based upon the prohibition against vague enactments as established in the Federal Constitution and the right to privacy founded in the California Constitution.

Senator Kuehl (who happens to be a 1978 Harvard Law School graduate) responded by saying: "There's no change in the law; it was always the same. All of these truly silly claims that they make about what could happen could have been happening over the last eight years and never did," she said. "I think they know they don't have a case. I think it's purely a fundraising mechanism for them."



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